Fermentation Science Institute
Benjy Jeffords / WSIU

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIU Fermentation Science Institute Director Matt McCarroll about his upcoming Science Cafe at the Science Center of Southern Illinois.


As a part of our ongoing feature  "Enlightening The Eclipse: Countdown to 2017" we go to a community information planning meeting which was held on October 18th, 2016.  In this report we will hear from Carbondale Tourism, the Greater Egypt Regional Planning and the Development Commission and, officials with Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and a local business manager.

WSIU/Kevin Boucher

Every year at this time,  on a road in Union County the United States Forest Service swings two big steel gates together  and locks them shut with a huge padlock, closing a two and a half mile stretch of Forest Road 345 to vehicle traffic, more commonly known as Snake Road.   Officials do this to protect  the large numbers of reptiles and amphibians as they  make  their annual, life-saving journey from the swamps to the rocks and crevices at the base of the 100 foot bluffs to spend the winter.  Even though all motorized vehicles are prohibited from using the road at this time, hikers are e

The Total Solar Eclipse: 1 Year and Counting.

Aug 19, 2016

On August 21st, 2017 a Total Solar Eclipse will pass over a large portion of the United States with Carbondale experiencing almost three minutes of totality.  As the one year away date approaches, WSIU radio talks with several eclipse experts about this 2017 Solar Eclipse.

SIU Carbondale

The City of Carbondale's Eclipse Coordinator, Diane Regan, held an open planning meeting in Carbondale recently with City Officials, SIU Officials and local business leaders to outline the plan the city is working on to successfully accommodate the between 50-thousands and potentially 100s of thousands of worldwide visitors to both Carbondale and the southern Illinois region.  Regan unveiled a special e-mail to be used for questions about the eclipse.  That special e-mail is:  You can also learn more about the first total solar eclipse since 1979 by visiting:

Acoustic Nature Hour Earth Day Special 2016.

Apr 23, 2016
Sarah Stoneski/USFW

Celebrate Earth Day 2016 with an Acoustic Nature Hour Earth Day Special.  Many, many thanks to the experts who appeared in this year's program.  Names below are listed in order of appearance.

Dr. Justin Filiberto, Assistant Professor in the SIU Department of Geology

Bob Baer, Computer and Electronics Specialist in the SIU Physics Department

Elizabeth Jones, Assistant Refuge Manager at Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge

Karen Mangan, Wildlife Biologist at Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge

Author Isaac Asimov once wrote, "The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not 'Eureka!' but, 'That's funny ... ' "

Good scientists search for the significance of surprises, coincidences and mistakes. With a little curiosity and perseverance, they can turn unexpected incidents into new insights.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller talks with SIUC Professor Karen Midden about her upcoming Science Cafe on edible landscapes.

Imagine a time in the not to distant future when Alzheimer's no longer exists.  The search for the fountain of youth has largely been a work of science fiction.  But science is on the cusp of a revolutionary breakthrough.  Dr. Michael Fossel is a physician and an expert in the science of cell aging and human aging.    WSIU's Jeff Williams recently talked with Dr. Fossel about his book The Telomerase Revolution for this edition of In The Author's Voice.

WSIU's Jennifer Fuller interviews SIU Carbondale Professory Gary Kinsel about his upcoming Science Cafe.

Ciril Jazbec/National Geographic

Weather patterns are shifting, ice caps are melting and sea levels are rising.   Climate change is the subject of the November issue of National Geographic magazine.  The entire issues is dedicated to exploring the issue as well as examining remedial actions.    WSIU's Jeff Williams talks with National Geographic magazine's Dennis Dimick for this edition of In The Author's Voice.   You can view the online edition here.

Kevin Boucher/WSIU

In 1991, the LaRue-Pine Hills/Otter Pond Research Natural Area was officially designated as a research site, the nation's 250th such area.  Join IDNR Herpetologist Scott Ballard as he takes us on an informative hike on Snake Road.

On a warm summer night, it can sound like there are insects all over the place, calling out from every lawn, bush and tree branch.

But most of what insects are saying to one another we can’t hear.

Saint Louis University evolutionary ecologist Kasey Fowler-Finn has been listening in on the hidden world of insect communication and one bug’s unusual love songs.

September Astronomy With Cheryl Ernst

Sep 11, 2015
Courtesy of NASA

As we move into September, the summer constellations give way to the Autumn wonders in the night sky.  Here with the Astronomy Feature for Friday September 11th, 2015 is Cheryl Ernst of the Astronomical Association of Southern Illinois.   This feature was written by Astronomer Andy Edelen.

A Supermoon on This Week's Astronomy Feature

Aug 28, 2015
Kevin Boucher

On this week's Astronomy feature, a full moon on Saturday August 29th, and Cheryl Ernst lets us know what planets can be seen in the west.  Special thanks for Cheryl Ernst and Andy Edelen of the Astronomical Association of Southern Illinois

August Astronomy With Cheryl Ernst

Aug 21, 2015

Here is Cheryl Ernst with this week's astronomy feature, which was written by Andy Edelen.

Dr. Fred Isberner

On August 21st, 2017 a Total Solar Eclipse will occur, with a point south of Carbondale being ground zero for this event.  To gather important scientific data from this event Dr. Matt Penn, with Tuscon Arizona's National Solar Observatory, has put together a proto-type computer-linked telescope to gather this data. 

Scientists at Washington University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have developed a new tool to study how specific brain cells affect behavior.

The miniature, wireless device can inject drugs into the brains of live mice.

July Astronomy with Cheryl Ernst

Jul 17, 2015
Andy Edelen

The planet Venus, now prominent in the western sky at dusk, will slowly fade this month.  For more about what the night sky holds this month, here is Cheryl Ernst of the Astronomical Association of Southern Illinois.  You can visit their website at:

Katie Bryant/Southern Illinois Birding Group

Lynn Johnson/National Geographic

Illinois and 22 other states allow the medical use of marijuana. The origin of cannabis for medicinal purposes dates back to the healers of ancient China. But what do we really know about the science of marijuana? Despite the fact that marijuana has been around for centuries very little scientific research has been conducted.  

May Astronomy Highlights

May 14, 2015

A best-selling author and theoretical physicist is  in Carbondale as part of the SIU Distinguished Speaker Series.

April Astronomy

Apr 1, 2015

The best place to view the solar eclipse on August 21, 2017 is southern Illinois. Scientists and enthusiasts from all over the world are already booking rooms and preparing their travel plans.

Radio waves are very common in space.  All across the Earth, huge specially-designed radio-telescopes allow us to listen in on these cosmic travelers.  When you look up in the night sky if often seems calm and quiet.  However that is only part of a bigger picture. 

WSIU Radio's Kevin Boucher talks with Bob Baer, a Computer and Electronics Specialist in the Physics Department at SIU-Carbondale.

March 2015 Astronomy highlights

Mar 4, 2015